Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Book Review: The Book of Colors by Raymond Barfield

About the book:

Title: The Book Of Colors
Published by: Unbridled Books
Published on: 2015
Pages: 211
Genre: Fiction
Rating: 4.5/5
Blurb: How can a 19-year-old, mixed-race girl who grew up in a crack house and is now pregnant be so innocent? Yslea is full of contradictions, though, seeming both young and old, innocent and wise. Her spirit is surprising, given all the pain she has endured, and that's the counterpoint this story offers—while she sees pain and suffering all around her, Yslea overcomes in her own quiet way. What Yslea struggles with is expressing her thoughts. And she wonders if she will have something of substance to say to her baby. It's the baby growing inside her that begins to wake her up, that causes her to start thinking about things in a different way. Yslea drifts into the lives of four people who occupy three dilapidated row houses along the train tracks outside of Memphis: "The way their three little row houses sort of leaned in toward each other and the way the paint peeled and some of the windows were covered with cardboard, the row might as easily have been empty."

About the author

Dr. Raymond Barfield is a pediatric oncologist at Duke University School of Medicine and an associate professor of philosophy at Duke Divinity School. He also works with the Institute on Care at the End of Life at Duke Divinity School—the Institute’s work crosses disciplines and focuses on the intersection of spirituality and medicine. Ray has a book out from Cambridge University Press, The Ancient Quarrel between Poetry and Philosophy, and he’s working on a nonfiction trade book that explores the intersection of spirituality, philosophy and science. He also has a book of poetry that was just published in October.
It’s his work with low-income African American children at Duke University Hospital and his previous experience in the ERs of Atlanta and Memphis inner-city hospitals that make him so familiar with the protagonist in The Book of Colors. Ray says he has met Yslea many times and her voice is embedded in his head
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My Review:

One unquestionable truth about the book is- it is the kind of book you pore your eyes over, dig the deeper meanings of and let the story and characters grow on you.

Faintly reminiscent of The Color Purple, partly because of the narration style and partly because of the characters and situation which form the basis of our reading. Even so, this book is nothing like what you'd have read ever before.

As is obvious, it is not a fast paced read, and letting the characters' lives hijack your own is the most deeply fulfilling experience. Yslea's perspective on live and everything for that matter is so shattering and overwhelming that you'd pause everytime she says something, reflect upon it and then let her grow on you. Not just Yslea, you'll let all the characters grow on you, get under your skin and make you feel the irony, cruel game of fate and pain- all at once. Through her guilelessness and innocence, Yslea shines throughout.
The Book of colors has a beautiful metaphorical meaning too!

The author has done a great job with the plot- it is coherent and structured, with the characters that are all well-etched and with the story- that never fails to move the reader.

Links to the book:





Quotes from the book:


It's not having money that makes a lot of things hard- The book of colors, Raymond Barfield
Posted by So many books, So little time. on Friday, August 28, 2015



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Source of the review copy: Author





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Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Book Review: Another Day by David Levithan

About the book:

Title: Every Day
Published by: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Published on: August 25th, 2015
Genre: YA
Rating: 4/5
Blurb:

In this enthralling companion to his New York Times bestseller Every Day, David Levithan (co-author of Will Grayson, Will Grayson with John Green) tells Rhiannon’s side of the story as she seeks to discover the truth about love and how it can change you.

Every day is the same for Rhiannon. She has accepted her life, convinced herself that she deserves her distant, temperamental boyfriend, Justin, even established guidelines by which to live: Don’t be too needy. Avoid upsetting him. Never get your hopes up.

Until the morning everything changes. Justin seems to see her, to want to be with her for the first time, and they share a perfect day—a perfect day Justin doesn’t remember the next morning. Confused, depressed, and desperate for another day as great as that one, Rhiannon starts questioning everything. Then, one day, a stranger tells her that the Justin she spent that day with, the one who made her feel like a real person . . . wasn’t Justin at all.
 

About the author

David Levithan (born 1972) is an American children's book editor and award-winning author. He published his first YA book, Boy Meets Boy, in 2003. Levithan is also the founding editor of PUSH, a Young Adult imprint of Scholastic Press.




About Everyday, He writes on his website, "2012 brought the release of Every Day , the story of a teen named A, who since birth has woken up in the body and the life of a new person every morning. At the start of the story, A is sixteen, and wakes up in the body of Justin, who’s never really treated his girlfriend, Rhiannon, that well. When A falls for Rhiannon, it suddenly changes the stakes of A’s story – and A’s life. When I started writing Every Day, there were two questions I wanted to answer – first, what would it be like to be a person who grew up without gender, race, sexual orientation, parents, friends, and all of the other things we usually classify ourselves by, and, second, what would it be like to be in love with someone who changed every day – would it be possible? I wrote the book to figure out what my answers were."


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My Review:

I was super thrilled to read this particular book having read Every Day just recently. Although I knew there won't be the freshness in the plot, still there were so many questions left unanswered from Rhiannon's perspective. I finished this book in no time practically, partly because I felt I was going through some parts again, for little utility.So, I skimmed through the dialogues that I found repetitive. Yes- they sounded beautiful from A's perspective, but Rhiannon's words made everything look like it was deceitful, and she was unfortunately made to look like the bad guy here.
I'll give this to the author- he did write R's perspective with so much conviction that it made me empathise with her, overriding the sympathy I had towards A earlier.

But, what goes without saying is the part where A woke up in R's body- I had all my excitement directed towards it. It was worth it. If i am given an option between Every Day and Another Day, I'd choose the latter, though Every Day is the novel that endears me to the author. Another day after ED sounds like a justification! Nevertheless, it was amusing by and by. Sequel is still awaited.
Was it worth it? You might ask. And my answer would be incontrovertibly, undeniably yes. It was so totally worth it. 

As I said about Every Day, same goes for Another Day: The plot is as refreshing as it gets. It is the story that delves deep into our definitions of friendship, love, companionship and belonging. How far will we go to be with someone? How far are we ready to bend the rules? Is bending the rules worth the breach? Does the breach justify the end? Are we ready for the consequences?
It gets you thinking and keeps you so.

But here is a friendly warning: to fully understand the book, and to let it to what it intends to, you need to accept it as fiction, being a realist wouldn't help. The beauty of the book lies in how it ticks our thinking cells by bringing another dimension to our world. 
This is the story of A. A wakes up each day in a new body- and that implies he misses out on so much. On having an address, on having a family, permanent fiends, and so on. Things we take for granted. Things we'd lose and not realize what hey're worth. 

Apart from the lessons in living, the plot sure does hold a sense of mystery and intrigue. The author has done such a great job in weaving a plot out of nothing, and I am definitely going to read more from the author.
A beautifully written book, provokes you into thinking incessantly, and makes you question the right and wrong.

Links to the book:




Quotes from the book:



“I find myself looking into people's eyes more than I ever did before. And I realize, that's where we stop being a...
Posted by So many books, So little time. on Saturday, July 25, 2015


“It wouldn't be fair to ask you to be around me when I'm so sick of being around me.”
Posted by So many books, So little time. on Saturday, July 25, 2015




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Source of the review copy: Netgalley ARC





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Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Book Review: Golden Heat by Ju Ephraime


 Review Tour Signup and Schedule: Golden Heat by Ju Ephraime (18-21 August)


Welcome to my stop on the Review Tour of Golden Heat by Ju Ephraime. This is a spicy romance with an intriguing twist of mystery.
Check out the complete Tour Schedule here

~About the Book~



Genre: Contemporary Romance, Native American
Blurb:

Andy Redfield is a hard-nose real estate developer, trying to settle his father’s estate and locate the treasure that was mentioned in his father’s will. Bernie Harp is a no-nonsense, private investigator, and who specializes in locating lost objects. When Andy hires her to find his dad’s treasure, she anticipates working alone, as was her custom. She communicates this to Andy in no uncertain terms, but Andy was having none of it. If anything, he was more determined than ever to lend his assistance. When finding the treasure becomes more than a routine job, and the presence of a suspicious intruder is discovered, tempers flare and sparks fly. While they have difficulty seeing eye-to-eye, Andy and Bernie agree on one thing: They need to capture the intruder and locate his father’s treasure.

Kicking and screaming, Bernie is forced to accept his presence on the job, even though it was distracting as hell. With them rubbing each other the wrong way, before they know it, the friction they generate turns to love’s golden heat, igniting a fire neither expected, and neither could deny. So, when Bernie unexpectedly disappears, Andy realizes she was more precious to him than all the treasures in the world, and he’d give up anything to find her—anything, including the treasure, only is he prepared for what he finds?


 Add-to-Goodreads: Golden Heat by Ju Ephraime

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~About the Author~

Ju Ephraime began writing professionally at age 19; at that time, she wrote short stories for the local radio station in her home town. She gave up writing to pursue her education and has since earned several degrees, including two Masters and a Doctorate in Higher Education Administration from Northeastern University in Boston. During the course of her schooling, she wrote and published a working curriculum for a career school, a business manual and its answer key, as well as other literary work. In 2010 she revisited her first love, writing for fun and enjoyment. She writes high heat, steamy, romance novels. The first was, State of Ecstasy in the LaCasse series, which was soon followed by, Temptation to Sin, Loving Therèse, #2 in the LaCasse series. Ju has gone on to write several more books, including, The Odor of Violet, on tour this month, Complete Surrender, #3 in the LaCasse series; as well as, a Christmas Novella, Footsteps in the Sand and her award winning paranormal, White Magic Woman, Quarterfinalist in Amazon Breakthrough Novel Contest, 2013, out of over 10,000 entrants.
Ju lives in Connecticut, where she is very active in her community. She is the administrator of a business school and the president of a non-profit organization that dresses individuals for job interviews.

Visit her blog at http://www.juephraime.blogspot.com or her personal page at http://www.juliaeantoine.com where you can sign up for e-mail updates and be the first to hear about new releases.

Find Ju on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/juephraimeauthor. She loves to chat with readers.

Follow her on Twitter at https://twitter.com/JuEphraime

 Review:

The plot begins as all cliched love stories do, only here both the male and female protagonists are strong-headed: they don't like the feeling of the other getting under their skin. Talent does't matter much when adrenaline steps in.
 We have a peek into those inevitable sensations right in the beginning: "if their fingers touching each other could produce such heat, imagine the conflagration if their bodies were to ever meet." Something about Andy rubbed Bernie the wrong way, and Andy was flummoxed around Bernie himself. 
From the beginning, we know where this is headed- and to me, it was just an entertaining read, a fast read too! 
The narration, the characters- I did not find anything flawed in anything. the plot is a thoroughly amusing one too!




~Giveaway~

Prize: $15 Gift Card for either Amazon, B&N, kobo, iTunes

Open Worldwide
Ends 6th Spetember

Open only to those who can legally enter and receive the prize. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded.No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Nikita (Njkinny) from Njkinny Tours & Promotions and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

Source of the review copy: ~Hosted by~
Njkinny Tours & Promotions


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